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5 Ways To Turn If Your College Major Does Not Match Your Passion

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(Editor’s Note: The following article is a guest post by superstar entrepreneur and tech investor Jonathan Schultz.)

Having a degree matters…but maybe not the specific degree you have. Why? Well, according to recent research by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, 62% of recent college graduates are working in jobs that require a degree, but only 27% of college graduates are working in a job that even relates to their major. Here are tips on how to pivot if your college major doesn’t match your motivation or passion.

1. REMEMBER, YOUR FIRST JOB MAY NOT ALIGN WITH YOUR MAJOR

Jobs in today’s world do not always fit what your college major may be. This is why it is important to have a minor that may not be something you love but is something that can come in handy in the workforce. Perhaps you could minor in computer engineering or coding even if you major in fashion media. You would be surprised at how these two separate studies could cross paths.

2. YOUR EXPERIENCE IS WHAT REALLY MATTERS

Take advantage of opportunities to intern in various different companies and in different types of jobs. Get involved on campus and volunteer for things you care about. Those items may get you excited about something that you otherwise didn’t study in school, which could bring you into a whole new direction.

3. FOCUS ON SOFT SKILLS

Employers want to see that you can learn fast, fit into the environment and be responsive to each task that is assigned. Ninety-three percent of employers believe that critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills are more vital than someone’s undergraduate field of study. Even Silicon Valley is starting to favor employees who studied liberal arts as those opposed to the typical technology path. Soft skills are a huge deal to employers. It’s great to create a product —but if you can’t get someone else to believe in it, then it will end up as just a great idea.

4. YOUR NETWORK IS PARAMOUNT

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You know what they say… “it isn’t about what you know, but WHO you know.” You can choose a business major with the target of becoming a CEO one day, but the truth of the matter is that if you don’t create a network, you’re limiting the speed of getting where you want to go. You can start building your network now by building relationships with your professors and peers and attending as many networking events as possible.

The major you choose is not the only path your career will take you on. You may end up with all A’s in finance but end up becoming a graphic designer. The choice is yours and it will be the right one as long as you are excited and find what motivates you to wake up every day and push forward.

Jonathan Schultz is an entrepreneur, real estate tech investor and influencer. He’s the co-founder of Onyx Equities, a leading private equity real estate firm, and has been voted one of the most powerful people in real estate. Follow Jon’s blog here

Personal Finance

DIY: How To Improve Your Personal Finances

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Even if you’re not looking for a property this exact second, you always want to be improving your position.

So, focus on the downtime to improve your finances, get your debt squared away, and put yourself in a better position when you are ready to buy!

It’s important to be sure of your financial position before you buy a property because you might find it’s harder to get that property than you would have originally thought.

Here are a few ways to quickly improve your finances to help you save more, pay down more debt, and qualify for better loans.

Pay Attention

One of the most common reasons that people struggle financially is because they simply don’t pay attention to what is going on in their own financial life. If you are not paying attention, you can’t hope to know what is going on and therefore know how to improve matters.

So, the first item on your list is to start paying attention to your finances!

When I’m working on a project, I’m laser-focused on the budget, the details, the costs, etc. But, sometimes in my personal life, I let this slide.

The reality is, when we do have a budget and focus on sticking to it, our bank account balances grow so much faster than when we aren’t using one.

I love to eat out, and my wife loves to buy small things around the house. One day, we looked back over the previous year of spending and found we each averaged over $1,000 per month on our hobbies!

By pulling back a little in each area, we were able to save over $1,000 per month but still do the things we enjoyed.

So, start by having a budget!

Even if you are financially well off and can afford most of what you want, by budgeting for the items and spreading the costs out over several months, you’ll find that you buy less, spend less, and save more.

Also, if you budget to pay down certain debts faster, you’ll see those balances dramatically drop!

So, do not overlook the importance of a family budget.

Save On Other Purchases

There might be a number of other big purchases you need to make before you get hold of your next property, and it is a good idea to make sure that you are only spending as much on those as absolutely necessary.

For any big ticket items, we actually start searching for them months or even a year in advance. For example, let’s consider kitchen appliances.

As you know, a full set of appliances can easily cost $5,000-$10,000 if you are getting high-end products. It includes a fridge, double oven, gas cooktop, microwave/fan, and dishwasher.

The first thing we did was go to the store and decide on two or three brands, styles and product lines we wanted. It’s hard to compare prices unless you are looking at similar products between stores.

Then, for months we’ll watch these items and their prices. Occasionally there will be sales and by tracking the pricing all year, we know which sales are worth getting or not. When we feel we are getting the best price, we’ll buy.

And by doing that, we can easily save $500-$1,000 or even more.

We did something similar with our TV, computer monitors, etc. Basically, anything that is currently working that we want to upgrade. Over the course of a year, we are saving thousands of dollars.

You might also use a money saving app to help.

Saving money in all these places will make an enormous difference when it comes to saving for your next down-payment

Pay Down Debt

With all the money you are saving by budgeting and by planning out major purchases, you might want to use some of it to pay down debt.

You’ll have to decide if it’s better to pay down debt or have a larger down payment because both will hold you back on your next purchase.

But, generally, paying down $1/month in debt is worth about $3/month in income. At least, as far as loans are concerned.

If you do decide to work on paying down your debt, I fully detail a unique debt pay down method to get you into your next rental property faster.

Increase Your Income

Most people just focus on debt, but the reality is you can only cut your expenses so much.

Income, on the other hand, has unlimited potential. So, why not focus on growing your income?

Increasing your monthly income can be done in a number of passive and active ways, and it is worth looking into as many of these as you can to find the right one for you. I outline a number of ways to increase your income in this article on how to earn $10,000 per month.

While earning $10,000 per month in side-income might seem a long way off, it’s important to start! Even if you can earn an extra $500 month now, and grow it slowly over time, it’s worth it!.

Don’t Focus on Just One Thing

As I mentioned already, focusing on just budgeting, or debt paydown can be detrimental to your overall financial goals. It’s important to combine a number of different things into an overall strategy, which includes budgeting, debt paydown, and increasing your income.

This article originally appeared on IdealREI. Follow them on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

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Wealth Hacks

How To Fix The Challenge Of Wanting Learning Opportunities But No Time To Learn

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Ready for a staggering statistic? According to LinkedIn’s 2018 Workplace Learning Report, 94% of team members said they would stay at their company longer if it invested in their career development. Now, here is the kicker: the report also said that the top reason team members said they felt held back from learning is because they didn’t have the time to learn the skills they needed to.

How do we fix this dilemma? By providing a workplace that offers learning opportunities that also provides the time for team members to take advantage of those learning opportunities. This will spark creativity because I know that I’m always happiest and most productive when I’m learning something new.

We get it – everyone is busy. We go to work and we are chained to our desks (or today: our laptops and iPhones) with mounds of work to get through and we form routines and things eventually become mundane and ultimately boring. Things don’t have to be this way, though.

HOW ARE TEAM MEMBERS ACTUALLY SPENDING THEIR TIME?

The first step is to get feedback from team members on how they are spending their time at work. These questions can be asked on many subjects at work. For example, how many meetings are absolutely necessary? Rethink why you have meetings. If there is too much email or point-to-point communication preventing people from learning, it is time to really rethink the company’s time management.

WHERE DO TEAM MEMBERS LIKE TO LEARN?

Second, find out how, when and where employees like to learn so you can gain context to establish a new way of learning, which we are all trying today to facilitate via different workplace spacial designs. In the LinkedIn report, team members said the following:

·       68% of team members want to learn at work

·       58% of team members want to learn at their own pace

·       49% of team members prefer to learn at the point of need

Not every type of learning is going to happen in a classroom or even warrants days off at a time. There are plenty of informal and social settings to learn in. The real key is to connect the bridge between how your team is spending their time and what the actual definition of learning looks like in this day and age.

It is entirely too easy to say that we are too busy to learn new things, but the truth is, we are hurting our careers and our companies by staying stagnant and not growing towards new ideas and processes. Dig deep and talk to your team and find out what they want to learn, how they want to learn and when they want to learn it.

Make it happen for you and your team and your business will experience success it has never experienced before.

Jonathan Schultz is an entrepreneur, real estate tech investor and influencer. He’s the co-founder of Onyx Equities, a leading private equity real estate firm, and has been voted one of the most powerful people in real estate. Follow Jon’s blog here.

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Wealth Hacks

Here’s Why You Should Never Sit On Too Much Cash…

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According to a recent NerdWallet survey, Americans sit on an average $32,286 in cash. Yet, a whopping 39% say they aren’t investing.

And yes, while nest egg is great, being too liquid also comes with a lot of downside. According to NerdWallet’s calculations, every $10,000 kept in cash over 30 years (vs. investing) comes out to $44,000 in lost returns.

“They’re potentially losing tens of thousands of dollars in compound interest,” financial expert Chris Hogan told FOX Business’ “Morning’s with Maria.”

Here’s why you should never sit on too much cash.

Interest rates (and inflation)

Interest rates are at an all-time low. Back in the day, 5% was common. These days, the average savings account offers a pathetic 0.6% return

Needless to say, those kind of rates won’t beat inflation over time. In other words, your money literally loses value just by sitting in your savings account. 

Despite this, the average saver—somehow—thinks it’s better to sit on the cash.

Of the participants in the study, 32% responded that they prefer to be able to access their money easily, so they choose to not invest. Another 28% said they didn’t know how to invest.

How much you should save

So what’s the alternative? Instead of having a nest egg, keep three to six months of expenses “parked in a money market account, not a savings account,” he said.

A money market account is basically a savings account, but you need at least $10,000 minimum deposit.

You can also consider moving it to a mutual funds or ETFs trading on the stock exchange, since most of them allow you to withdraw your funds anytime—and they offer much better returns than a savings account.

All in all, any cash over this 2% inflation threshold can be invested across various asset classes, most of which offer great returns on your investment.

How to choose an investment

The trick here is to research and invest in the funds that fit your bill and investment horizon.

The takeaway from this move is the massive compounding growth your investments will gain over time.

One of the best examples of this is Grace Groner’s, a regular American who bought three shares of Abbott for $180 back in 1935.

Due to compounded interest, the value grew to a $7M fortune less than seven decades later. Now that’s what you call a #WealthHack.

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